Requirements and criteria for the design and planning of ocean energy farms

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Date
26/05/2015

This document reviews existing approaches and methodologies for the analysis of ocean energy arrays with a clear focus on the results and conclusions provided by previous experiences. The key outcome is the definition of quantifiable and qualitative metrics for economic viability, reliability and environmental impact which have been adopted in the global set of tools developed within the project DTOcean.

The needs of the industry, the recommendations of the Advisory Board and a literature review about the current approaches allowed the achievement of the main objective of this task consisting of the definition of the set of conditions (physical, economic and environmental) and design criteria (cost of energy COE, reliability index, energy yield and performances, etc.) for ocean energy arrays that will determine the drivers for the comparison of different alternatives. In particular, the needs of the industry have also been analysed and conveyed into the definition of the key requirements and variables for the definition of a decision tool. The most important technical parameters defined for the scenarios have been characterised by quantifiable variables (e.g. distance to shore, distance to port, power capacity of the grid, area of the sea surface available for deployment etc.), or suitable proxy, so as to allow their direct introduction into the design tool and they are herein reported as identified in Deliverable 1.1 – “Detailed deployment scenarios for wave and tidal energy converters” [1]. Since the economic framework represents an ideal method to evaluate and weigh the importance of different technical decisions, the levelised cost of energy (LCOE) was defined as the major economic quantifiable parameter; similarly reliability indicators and environmental impact factors have been identified and herein described.